State media: Former Sudanese president al-Dahab dies, 83

CAIRO (AP) — Sudan’s state news agency is reporting that former field marshal and president of Sudan, Abdelrahman Swar al-Dahab, who seized power in a military coup but passed leadership over to civilians in 1986 after a year in power, has died at the age of 83.

SUNA said he died on Thursday, while Saudi channel Al Arabiya reported that he died in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. Neither immediately gave any further information on al-Dahab, who was the fifth president of Sudan.

In 1985, al-Dahab ousted President Gaafar Nimeiry, but kept a promise he made to return power to elected officials after Prime Minister Sadiq al-Mahdi emerged after voting in 1986.

An Islamist, he recently urged Egypt, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates to end a blockade they’ve imposed on their tiny but rich Gulf rival Qatar.

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